What’s installed on my Mac?
Everyone’s Mac is configured differently, but my Mac is — of course — configured the best for me. Through a process of trying to forget Windows and learn Mac, I streamlined my way of working on macOS and customized this monster by installing and configuring tons of stuff that doesn’t come pre-installed. Perhaps you will like some of my suggestions?
Brew is just a package manager and has no value on its own — but almost all of the apps that I use are installed using Brew — therefore I have to start the configuration of any new Mac workstation with a command-line injection of Brew. You don’t know how to run Terminal and inject the code below? This article is not for you, go somewhere else! :-)
/bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/master/install.sh)"
LaunchBar is life. LaunchBar is love. Once I learned the magic of Command-space (invocation of LaunchBar), I stopped using the dock and became a keyboard wizard. Give LaunchBar a week — you will either love it or you should not read my articles anymore. [$29.00]
brew cask install launchbar
LaunchBar - Meet the future of productivity
Start with a single keyboard shortcut to access and control every aspect of your digital life. Use LaunchBar and…
Mac can’t split the direction of scrolling for touchpad and mouse scroll wheel. But I want to have natural mouse scrolling and reverse touchpad scrolling! Scroll Reverser allows me to configure them my way.
brew cask install scroll-reverser
For OS X 10.7+: Download Scroll Reverser v1.7.6 (11 May 2017; release notes) For OS X 10.4+: Download Scroll Reverser…
Terminal that comes with macOS is adequate. But what I want is not adequate! I want an amazing terminal, and Iterm2 is so good I actually want to spend time in it and use command line mode for nearly everything.
brew cask install iterm2
iTerm2 - macOS Terminal Replacement
iTerm2 is a replacement for Terminal and the successor to iTerm
Bash is an ok shell that ships on MacOS (before Catalina). But my go-to shell on all operating systems is — for years — zsh. Even Apple recognized its value and they now ship zsh as a default shell in Catalina and after. I still inject zsh into my Mac so I get zsh updates and patches from the source.
brew cask install zsh
brew cask install font-droid-sans-mono
Zsh is a shell designed for interactive use, although it is also a powerful scripting language. More information can be…
My top menu bar would be cluttered and a complete disgrace when I share my screen with my clients and teams. There is so much garbage among menu bar icons — and Bartender will arrange, hide and streamline them all. I know it is just cosmetics, but I like my desktop neat and tidy! [$15.00]
brew cask install bartender
Bartender 3 lets you organize your menu bar icons, by hiding them, rearranging them, show hidden items with a click or…
This one is kinda obvious and required. Perhaps I am biased due to my 15 years of Microsoft career, but there is no other productivity suite that comes close to Microsoft Office. [not free; price varies]
brew cask install microsoft-office
brew cask install Microsoft-teams
Office 365 for Mac, Office for Mac
Office for Mac with Office 365, gives you power and flexibility to get things done virtually from anywhere. Find the…
Download Microsoft Teams on any Device
Get Microsoft Teams on all your devices. We have desktop apps for Windows, MacOS, and Linux, as well as mobile apps for…
Adobe Acrobat Reader DC
Do I really care about PDF files? Nah. But when it comes to digital signing and PDF forms editing, I am forced to install this thing. A man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do.
brew cask install adobe-acrobat-reader
Adobe Acrobat Reader
Download free Acrobat Reader DC software, the only PDF viewer that lets you read, search, print, and interact with…
Forklift is the heavy-duty file manager. With multiple windows. And with S3 access. And synching, file previews, tags, remote editing, git support and Dropbox integration. It is flexible enough that it is almost as useful as Windows File Explorer. Almost.
brew cask install forklift
ForkLift 3 - most advanced file manager and FTP client for macOS
The most advanced dual pane file manager and file transfer client for macOS. Requires macOS 10.11.6 or later Buy Now…
Dash is a cheat-sheet for geeks. It keeps docsets for all key technologies at my fingertips. What is that odd shell command? Dash can tell me. How about Node.js library that I use often? Dash has it covered. How do I tag the code in markdown? Dash knows. [$29.99]
brew cask install dash
Dash is an API Documentation Browser and Code Snippet Manager. Dash searches offline documentation of 200+ APIs and…
Microsoft Visual Studio Code
VS Code is the best code editor for geeks. Here, I said it. There are other great editors and integrated coding environments (like Atom, Sublime, Emacs or VIM), but VS Code works for me better than anything else. I told you that I am biased!
brew cask install xvisual-studio-code
Visual Studio Code - Code Editing. Redefined
Visual Studio Code is a code editor redefined and optimized for building and debugging modern web and cloud…
Kindle reader for Mac
While Dash is great to find a snippet of code or understand the syntax of an obscure API call, I still need to read books to learn larger concepts. Most of the technical books I have been purchasing through Kindle store, therefore I need a Kindle reader on my Mac to re-visit some of the more advanced topics.
brew cask install kindle
Free Kindle Reading Apps for iOS, Android, Mac, and PC
Turn your phone or tablet into a book with the free Kindle apps for iOS, Android, Mac, and PC. Read anytime, anywhere…
This is an OpenVPN client that is smooth, flexible and very advanced. It supports IPv6, obfuscation and split DNS. And it works on Windows too. [$14.00]
brew cask install viscosity
Viscosity is a first class VPN client, providing everything you need to establish fast and secure OpenVPN connections…
I live in ssh sessions all the time; any cloud instance I create, I control through ssh or mosh session. macOS terminal is adequate Termius is amazing. So worth it for cloud people!
brew cask install termius
The #1 cross-platform terminal with built-in ssh client which works as your own portable server management system in…
I was very sceptical about Mac’s Touchbar — to me it was just a crappy 1/4-inch touch screen for MacBook. BTT changed that view. Try AquaTouch presets — or GoldenChaos. It changed my dismissive view of Touchbar usability. [$7.50]
brew cask install bettertouchtool
That’s just a browser. Because Safari sucks. And because Chrome violates every possible privacy code I believe in. Vivaldi is based on chromium and has tons of features not found anywhere else.
brew cask install vivaldi
Vivaldi - The browser that puts you in control
Your browser matters. Vivaldi is a new browser with unrivaled customization and control. Fast, secure and flexible …
Yet another browser. Also built on chromium. Also cool; it includes ad-blocker and TOR client by default.
brew cask install brave-browser
Secure, Fast & Private Web Browser with Adblocker | Brave Browser
Earn frequent flier-like tokens just for browsing Turn on Brave Rewards to earn frequent flier-like tokens for viewing…
Every app that has a dark mode, I use it in a dark mode. And still, the blue light that irradiates my face every night prevents me to fall asleep. f.lux will kill blue light in the evening and make my night owl life less miserable.
brew cask install flux
Ever notice how people texting at night have that eerie blue glow? Or wake up ready to write down the Next Great Idea…
This one should be obvious. WhatsApp on Mac that sends/receives my WhatsApp messages via my phone. Sadly it doesn’t support audio/video calls yet, but it is still cool to use a real keyboard to interact with people at 2 am.
brew cask install whatsapp